Skin Matters – Lightening, Brightening and Whitening!
Beautiful, glowing perfect skin, that’s what we all endeavor to achieve, dealing with unsightly skin blemishes can be quite emotionally taxing and with so many skin products out there with so many promises to help you reach the perfect glow, we do whatever it takes- whether right or wrong – to get that perfect glow.
We are constantly inundated by buzz words such as ‘enhancing’ ‘even-toned’ ‘anti-aging’ ‘fast’ or ‘reverse’. As if these are not enough, then there are promising effects such as brighten, lighten or whiten, if you are struggling to decipher these adjectives then you’re not alone and that’s what we’re here to help out with today.
Brightening Vs Lightening – in a nutshell
According to founder of 900 Fifth Dermatology, Dr Dennis Gross https://www.dennisgrossmd.com/ ‘lightening is reducing pigmentation and brightness is increasing radiance and glow of skin. Lightening has to do with discoloration and evening of skin tone’.
To keep it short – if you’re looking to reduce and/or totally remove dark spots from sun exposure or scarring, you could benefit from skin brightening.
So how do you tell which is which between brightening products and lighteners? The Ingredients!
In skin brighteners you want to look out for vitamin C, retinol, alpha and beta hydroxyl acids.
Most importantly, remember not all skin tones are the same, therefore not all products achieve the same result on different skin tones.
Makari.com defines skin whitening, also known as skin bleaching, as a treatment designed to give you a skin tone lighter than the one you were born with…generally achieved by the use of chemicals.’ Most skin whitening or skin bleaching products contain harmful products such as mercury, which according to the WHO publication
https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/9789240023567 is highly toxic to human health, posing a particular threat to the development of the child in utero and early in life. Skin whitening is a controversial topic, mostly due to the fact that some of the ingredients in skin bleaching products are banned in certain countries due to their harmful side effects.
A Common agent used in skin whitening creams is hydroquinone, banned in Europe since 2000, which works by decreasing production of Melanin. Melanin is what protects the outer layer of the skin from UV lights and according to research may also help block processes in the body that lead to skin cancer – https://www.healthline.com/health/skin/benefits-of-melanin#benefits
To wrap up, each skin treatment serves a different purpose, but it’s always best to consult a medical profession before embarking on any skin treatment.